Football News

Scholes: Solskjaer must find a player who fits ‘Carrick role’ for Man Utd

By J Smith

Published: 16:06, 20 September 2019

Paul Scholes believes Ole Gunnar Solskjaer must find Manchester United’s new Michael Carrick in midfield.

Carrick made 464 appearances for the Red Devils during his playing and is now part of Solskjaer’s coaching staff at Old Trafford.

Who could United’s new Carrick be? Five things to know…

  • Scholes believes United are lacking a controlling influence in the middle of midfield.
  • The ex-England international believes Solskjaer needs to find a Carrick-esque player to fill the role.
  • He earmarked Scott McTominay and Paul Pogba as potential candidates.
  • Pogba has completed more passes in the Premier League (247) than any Man Utd midfielder.
  • McTominay ranks second among their midfielders with 220.

Scholes was also a team-mate of Carrick’s and believes United miss his controlling influence in the middle of the park, earmarking Scott McTominay and Paul Pogba as two current squad members who could potentially take up that responsibility.

“I think they need a player who can control a game. Michael Carrick was magnificent at doing that,” Scholes said.

“They have some talented midfield players in there now. I think [Scott] McTominay has done really well this season.

“And Pogba we all know on his day can be sensational and probably one of the best in the world in that position, but we just need to see it more often, we need to make sure he wants to stay at the club to get that out of him. But I think Ole will be looking, he’ll be trying.”

Scholes: United’s lack of centre-forwards a worry

Scholes also highlighted a potential lack of centre-forwards right now as a worry for Man Utd.

Mason Greenwood, 17,  netted his first senior goal against Astana in the Europa League on Thursday night, while Solskjaer does have Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial at his disposal.

However, Scholes is one of many to question whether the latter two are natural strikers or more suited to wide roles and suggested United may need to go back to the approach of having “four brilliant centre-forwards”, as was the case when Sir Alex Ferguson was in charge.

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“I’d be more worried about the centre-forward position,” he added.

“I know we spoke about Mason Greenwood coming through. We have Marcus and Martial – are they centre-forwards or are they wingers? We’re not quite sure.

“I always think United, going back to when they were challenging for titles, they had four brilliant centre-forwards and I think that’s something that’s missing at this minute in time.”